Byline: MARK HOLGATE Photographed by Raymond Meier.
Midnight in the garden of good
After dark, guerrilla gardenersin earthy woven sandals and raffia bagsturn the concrete jungle into an urban Eden.
Years ago, a young garden designer named Dan Pearson moved to the decrepit Bonnington
Square, in a very ungentrified area of south London. The tumbledown Victorian houses were being squatted by students whose aesthetic sensibilities were offended by the raw environs they found themselves in. Despite having no legal right to do so, theyPearson includedstarted digging, planting, seeding, and tending the earth. “Before long, a rash of green spread across the square,” he recalls. “People started socializing outside, which they’d never done before. It gave the place a heart.” Pearson and his crew had become an environmental Robin Hood and his Merry Green Men and Women: stealing land from the rich (property owners) to give back to the poor (beleaguered community). They’d become guerrilla gardeners.
The green rash of guerrilla gardening is everywhere these days, though its roots can’t be unearthed. London wasn’t ground zero. Neither was New York, where eco/community activists created gardens among the tenements of the Lower East Side back in the seventies. (Pearson documents both in his new Fuel Publishing book, Spirit: Garden Inspiration .) But worldwide, wherever there are wastelands, roadsides, and long-neglected strips of land, they’re being turned into urban oases by devotees who care about the environmentand their environment. (Yes, they’re breaking the law. No, we’re not advocates for illegal activity. But when the transformations can be so dramatic and life-enhancing, we’re with the Merry band.)
This year’s resort accessories share guerrilla gardening’s love of nature. There is organic-chic straw from Lanvin; rustic woven leather from Proenza Schouler. Clearly, the irony of these A1/4berluxe pieces in the context of a grassroots movement isn’t lost on us. But there is common ground: Both want to make the experience of city life that much more beautiful.
To see more of our favorite fall accessories, go to Accessory File at vogue.com.
Nocturnal planting requires a steady handand a substantial sandal underfoot. Suede gardening gloves, $20; takashimaya-ny.com. Derek Lam nude calfskin-and-cork platforms ($790), sleeveless cardigan, and shorts; Derek Lam, NYC.
Guerrilla gardeningand the city-chic raffia bagis on the rise. From left: Balenciaga sunglasses ($325), skinny belt ($215), striped raffia bag ($795), peep-toe sandals ($725), jacket, blouse, collar, and shorts. Sunglasses at Saks Fifth Avenue. Belt at Bergdorf Goodman. Bag at Barneys New York. Sandals at Balenciaga, NYC. Yves Saint Laurent sand raffia-and-leather satchel ($1,095), bolero, and dress; Yves Saint Laurent boutiques. Details, see In This Issue.
From near right: Prada ostrich bag ($4,990), top, and skirt; (888) 977-1900. Mark Davis bracelets, $3,990 each; Barneys New York. Donna Karan New York wedges, $595; Donna Karan New York stores. Sting in the Tail leather apron, $95; takashimaya-ny.com. Jimmy Choo suede ankle boots, $995; Jimmy Choo boutiques. Miu Miu bodysuit and skirt. On both: Gaspar Gloves by Dorothy Gaspar, $185 and $250; gaspargloves.com. Details, see In This Issue.
GLOVES AT THE READY
Theyand a tote big enough to hold seedlings and saplingsare vital. CA[c]line leather belt ($350), ankle-strap heels ($870), loden shirt, and khaki skirt; Barneys New York. Rose gloves, $38; nybgshop.org. Bottega Veneta woven napa-leather bag; Bottega Veneta, NYC.
A color palette reminiscent of camouflage is one way to blend into the undergrowth. Albertus Swanepoel bucket hat, $230; albertusswanepoel.com. Hublot rubber-strap watch; hublot.com. Marc Jacobs embroidered leather shoulder-strap bag ($1,395) and pants; Marc Jacobs, NYC. Louis Vuitton jacket. Details, see In This Issue.
IN THE FIELD
Ultratextured woven sandals ensure grass won’t grow under your feet. Pamela Love Jewelry beaded cuffs, $650 each; Opening Ceremony, NYC. Proenza Schouler multicolor woven slingbacks, $1,055; Opening Ceremony, Los Angeles. Alexander Wang pants.